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Who Do You Say That I Am?

30 minutes / 3 characters

The Time: It is Passover week, late Thursday night, AD 30
The Place: The Garden of Gethsemane, outside the walls of Jerusalem.

The Garden is a place of tranquility, of shaded peace amidst the aroma of ancient olive trees. Here the olives are harvested and made into the oil used by everyone in the city. And into this peaceful setting have come a rabbi and his disciples.

Suddenly the Garden is filled with a mob, here to arrest the rabbi—Jesus of Nazareth. And just as suddenly, the mob has accomplished its mission, and has taken the rabbi back into the city of Jerusalem. His followers have scattered, and the garden is once again quiet, but unnaturally still.

There are those who have been privy to the events of this night—indeed, the events of the past week. But who is this one just arrested? Is he teacher, rabbi? Is he Master and Lord? Is he really God—or just a shrewd deceiver?

Who Do You Say That I Am? begins as the crowd has departed. The gardener and his acquaintances are left to discuss and argue over just who this Jesus of Nazareth really is.

Erastus, the Gardener
Erastus is in charge of the Garden of Gethsemane. He tends the shrubs and trees—mostly olive trees—and oversees the pressing of the olives into oil. Erastus has the appearance of a hermit who spends little time in or around civilized society. He is squat and generously rotund, with a smudged face and dirt under his fingernails. However, while his manners and tone are gruff, these character traits fail to hide a mind more quick and nimble than his appearance would suggest.

Shara, the Syrian Baker
This woman runs a small bakery just around the corner from where Jesus holds the Last Supper with His disciples. Shara is a simple (yet not unintelligent) woman who finds escape from an unhappy and unfulfilling marriage in her successful business. She lives peacefully with both the Jews and the Romans--not really understanding or caring deeply about either.

Hananiah, the Money-changer
This banker has overheard the teachings of Jesus for some time, as he has sat in the temple courtyard changing Roman coinage to Tyrian for worshippers. Beyond his professional situation, Hananiah is a steely-eyed, cold-blooded snob who thinks himself more intelligent, more wealthy, and more privileged than just about anyone he meets. Those beneath him, he ignores; those above him, he courts.

Who Do You Say That I Am? Garden of Gethsemane Jesus Arrest Betrayal Soldiers Sanhedrin Gardener Baker Money-changer Banker Confusion Death Crucifixion Easter Palm Sunday Good Friday Temple Jerusalem

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by Dr. Radut.